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A Prospective Study of Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1, Its Binding Protein 3, and Risk of Endometriosis

07 Jul 2015

Several retrospective case-control studies suggested that insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) or insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 (IGFBP-3) was associated with endometriosis. However, results are inconsistent and no prospective study exists. We prospectively evaluated associations between plasma levels of IGF-1 and IGFBP-3 and laparoscopically confirmed endometriosis in a case-control study nested within the Nurses' Health Study II. Between blood collections in 1996–1999 and 2007, we ascertained 310 premenopausal women with incident endometriosis and 615 matched controls. We estimated incidence rate ratios and 95% confidence intervals using multivariable conditional logistic regression. We observed no statistically significant associations between endometriosis and IGF-1 (incidence rate ratio (IRR) = 0.88, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.61, 1.27; Ptrend = 0.48), IGFBP-3 (IRR = 1.12, 95% CI: 0.80, 1.57; Ptrend = 0.51), and the IGF-1:IGFBP-3 molar ratio (IRR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.66, 1.34; Ptrend = 0.64), comparing the top with the bottom tertile. IGF-1, IGFBP-3, and the molar ratio appeared to be positively associated with endometriosis risk among women aged <40 years at blood draw (IGF-1: IRR = 1.60, 95% CI: 0.86, 2.98; IGFBP-3: IRR = 1.85, 95% CI: 1.08, 3.16; IGF-1:IGFBP-3: IRR = 1.57, 95% CI: 0.85, 2.88) but not among women aged ≥40 years at blood draw (all Pheterogeneity ≤ 0.05). Overall, these data suggest that, if IGF-1 or IGFBP-3 plays a role in the etiology of endometriosis, it is minimal and perhaps only among younger women.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in American Journal of Epidemiology